St. Patrick’s Day Inspired Dinner: Steamed Salmon, Sweet Potato Colcannon and Asparagus with Roasted Pistachios

St. Patrick’s Day Dinner: Steamed Salmon, Sweet Potato Colcannon and Asparagus with Roasted Pistachios
St. Patrick’s Day Dinner: Steamed Salmon, Sweet Potato Colcannon and Asparagus with Roasted Pistachios

Did you ever eat Colcannon, made from lovely pickled cream?
With the greens and scallions mingled like a picture in a dream.
Did you ever make a hole on top to hold the melting flake
Of the creamy, flavoured butter that your mother used to make?

Yes you did, so you did, so did he and so did I.
And the more I think about it sure the nearer I’m to cry.
Oh, wasn’t it the happy days when troubles we had not,
And our mothers made Colcannon in the little skillet pot.

It was the luck of the Irish, amid all the twitters, I learned about colcannon from Foodwishes. A traditional Irish dish, colcannon is made with white potatoes, salt and pepper. Cooked kale or cabbage is thrown in for a healthy measure, and this dish wouldn’t be Irish without generous quantities of cream or milk. It would seem as if this old world dish had been in my index of recipes my whole life, for it’s combining two of my favorite vegetables: potatoes and kale.

Being of the new world, I wanted to add an American twist via the way of another old world, Africa. Instead of using Irish white potatoes, this version is made with sweet potatoes. Ironically, this dish reflects the Irish flag’s colors of green for the kale, white for the cream, and orange for the sweet potatoes. It has a rich taste worth a pot of gold.


Steamed Salmon
Steamed Salmon

Steamed Salmon

Olive oil
1 shallot, thinly sliced or diced
1 lb. salmon
2 to 3 tbsp. of vermouth
1/4 to 1/2 cup Italian parsley
1 tbsp. butter
1/4 cup dry white wine
The juice of one lemon
salt and pepper, to taste

1. Over medium-high heat, saute shallot until translucent.

2. Add vermouth and bring to a boil.

3. Add salmon fillet, skin side down.

4. Add lemon juice, wine, parsley, salt and pepper. Top with butter.

5. Reduce heat to a shimmer and cook until desired tenderness.

6. Serve and enjoy.

Sweet Potato Colcannon

Irish Inspired Sweet Potate Colcannon
Irish Inspired Sweet Potate Colcannon

1 lb. of sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
4 oz. butter, room temperature
1/8 cup cream, room temperature
1 to 2 lb. curly kale, rinsed 3 times
a dash of sherry vinegar
6 green onions, finely chop white parts and roughly chopped green parts
1 tbsp. brown sugar
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 tbsp. of sherry (Maybe whiskey is a better choice?)
1 cup of roughly chopped Italian parsley
a dash of olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
bread crumbs
crushed red pepper, to taste

1. Add sweet potatoes to a pot and cover with water. Add salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cook potatoes until soft, about 10 to 20 minutes. Set aside.

2. As the potatoes are cooking, bring a large pot of water, sherry vinegar, crushed red pepper, salt and pepper to a boil. Add Kale and cook for 6 to 10 minutes. Strain and let cool. Finely chop kale and set aside.

3. Preheat oven to 350°F. Mash sweet potatoes, butter and cream together. Mix in brown sugar, nutmeg, green onions, sherry, parsley, olive oil, salt and pepper.

4. Mix in kale.

5. Place mixture into a casserole dish. Place pieces of butter on top. Cover with bread crumbs.

6. Place in oven and bake for 20 to 30 minutes, until bread crumbs are golden brown.

7. Enjoy!

Asparagus with Roasted Pistachios

1/8 to 1/4 cup of Italian pistachios, toasted and roughly chopped
1 lb. asparagus, cleaned and cut into 1 inch pieces
1/2 cup. olive oil
2 to 3 tbsp. of white balsamic vinegar
1 small garlic clove, minced
1 tbsp. mustard
salt and pepper
The zest and juice of one lemon

1. Steam asparagus until desire tenderness.

2. Whisk the rest of the ingredients together to make a vinaigrette.

3. Mix pistachios, asparagus and vinaigrette together.

4. Enjoy.